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  1. Hi AnthonyB Yes the EL system is powered into the main lighting as you say... and I test the lighting every month using the key test switches. But the new keypad entry systems have been fitted and their power comes from the EL key test power circuit as when i test the EL the keypad power goes out - leading me to know they have been powered from the feed between the key test switch and the EL unit. If they had connected the keypad from the feed side of the key test switch then the power would not go out when i test the EL system... Another concern is that one door is used by the first person in the mornings to gain entry into the office via one of these keypads... so if there is a fault on this particular key test switch then there will be no power to the keypad and so nobody would be able to gain entry into the office as all other doors are dead-bolted from within until the first person gains entry to unlock all the doors accordingly. BS5266:1 indicates nothing on wiring separately to other electrical systems but it does state "the test device must not interrupt power to any other electrical equipment that could cause a hazard". The keypad not working does not cause a hazard but more of an inconvenience... but I still feel it is wrong to power up other electric devices by breaking in and connecting from EL systems...
  2. We have had a contractor fit electronic keypad entry systems to the doors of our office (as we are in a communal building) and need clarification on the wiring of said keypad. When I operate the Key Test Switch to check the Emergency Lighting the keypads power is lost - which in my opinion should not happen as this makes me feel the contractor broke in and powered them up on the key test circuit... so unless I'm mistaken if the keypad goes wrong would this not cause power to go out on emergency light and go into emergency power mode for emergency lighting? This has been done at 3 other doors too. Our main door was like it but then we had another contractor in to fit in an electronic signing in/out system with a new keypad entry system... this does not lose power when testing emergency lighting - so feel they knew it was initially wrong and therefore sought out another power source separate from the emergency lighting circuit. So should all emergency lighting systems be powered separately (except standard lighting as it needs to monitor the power to them) from other consumer units? Any regulations you can identify for me as I need evidence to offer to our maintenance manager. The door can be opened up manually from the inside (unfortunately the door opens inwards to get out - not final door to building) so this is not the issue. The issue is nobody can enter the office during a test as the keypad is off and no other way of getting into the office unless banging on the door to be heard for someone to go open the door for them. Security wise the locks on these doors do not disengage although the new keypad door does. We also have button releases on the new door and not the old ones. I'm more for wanting to know on the regulations and requirements for powering up other systems via the emergency lighting circuits via the key test switch. As far as i'm concerned the key test switch should only operate the emergency lighting circuit for test purposes... not also power off other things like keypads.
  3. Hi green, Yes this is my point exactly. I am responsible for setting up the testing rota for the building and it is frustrating that the original system is one where you flick the test switch and all power to main lights go out and the EL is left lit - then you can discharge accordingly. Now the refurbishment on the ground floor seems to be wired up in the 'new' way - does not extinguish power to mains. Just to add the building is 2 story - ground floor has been refurbed and incorporates two training workshops with changing areas, reception, two classrooms, one first-aid room, cafe, kitchen, 2 main offices and 3 storage rooms, 2 sets of conveniences. First floor has a conference room, dining area, servery and kitchen with adjourning conveniences, 11 rooms (classroom or meeting/training rooms), 5 office rooms and 3 sets of conveniences. At the moment the only areas in use are reception and workshops/classrooms on ground floor (which are the areas refurbed). As a further question (new-wired system), if a mains light unit houses 3 tubes, one of which is the EL tube, would flicking the test switch still discharge the batteries and finally that tube go out after 1, 2 or 3 hours depending and leave only the remaining 2 tubes illuminated as normal? Thanks again...
  4. Hi, Thanks for the responses. It's swings and roundabouts in the building as some areas the key switch shuts off the power to the lights (per room, location) and illuminates the EL. The new refurbished areas the key switch does not cut power to the lights, and with some EL units being part of the main lights this poses a problem to actually see if they are working or not. Yes they have green LEDs in them but you have to look closely to see if they are actually coming on as required. In my humble opinion the switch should be of "simulation" status IE cutting power (as it would if in a power cut, fire, etc.) and illuminating EL only. Yes if it can cause problems in occuopied areas, but if we are to check these facilities then surely common sense would prevail and we would inform persons that we are testing the system? In my office I am looking at a 3 tube light unit which is an EL. Now looking at the red LEd I do not know sue to looking into the light if it is illuminated or not. The only way to check is by switching the main lights off as normal and visually checking thus - or to flick the key test switch to shut off power and visually check that way. Sometimes I wonder if progress for the better is going huge steps backwards. Simple system would be you switch the main lights on as normal, then operate the test key switch which simulates a power cut - so you can visually see the EL works. Yes if you are testing/servicing on the discharge test then no lights would be a problem for persons working in those areas and so this would need doing when unoccupied - so I can see the logic behind the key switches not shutting off power - but that would only be for green LEDs and not red LEDs that would be difficult to visually see - similar if 3 tube lighting is working and one of the tubes is the EL light you wouldn't know if that EL unit was working if the main lights are still being powered... As I understand it the EL light units that (should) have LEDs on them, the LEDs are illuminated when in normal 'charging' mode but go out when in EL mode? Again thanks anyway for your help.
  5. Hi Tom, I'm afraid things still seem clear as mud. However I'm not too sure whether they are maintained, non-maintained or self contained or if either of them are similar or not. However in certain areas not rebuilt the EL is of the "flick test switch and the main goes out" type of set-up. So does this mean that the whole system would need rewiring to the new 'correct' standard? Thanks for the document you link in but it states as follows:- "The supply to self-contained luminaires should be such as to prevent unauthorised disconnection, but should incorporate suitable means for simulating a mains failure for test purposes. The source of supply should be from the same local fuse as the normal lighting, so that in the event of a fuse failure causing the normal lighting to be extinguished, the emergency lighting is brought into operation in the same locality." So I take it that this means the test switch facility should extinguish main lighting and only leave on the EL system.
  6. Hi all, Just wondering if anyone out there can alleviate me of a small issue. I work in a Council owned building and the emergency lighting fitted is wired up as such that when you operate the 'fish-tail' key test switches, the power goes out to all the main lights and leaves the emergency lighting on... which I feel is the right way for it to be wired up. Now I have to write up the Fire Risk Assessment on a new bought building (built around 2000, refurbished in 2009) but my concern is on the EL system. It seems that the EL does not extinguish the power to the main lights when operating the test. We have even had redesign building work down to the ground floor area and the main and EL has been fitted new installation. Now when I asked why the power does not go out on the main lights when I operate the test on the EL, I've been told this is how they are wired now. Can anyone tell me what is the correct way?
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